The Secret to Loving and Serving Others
Devotional thought for the day:
“When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments again he went back to the table. ‘Do you understand’, he said, ‘what I have done to you? 13 You call me Master and Lord, and rightly; so I am. 14 If I, then, the Lord and Master, have washed your feet, you must wash each other’s feet. 15 I have given you an example so that you may copy what I have done to you.” John 13:12-15 (NJB) (
Consider listening to this song –http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4I47c29GvFY while reading this blog
The church has been designed to be a community, a place where people have learned to lay aside their wants and desires, and serve others, to nurture others, to imitate Christ’s life, and the blunt clear lessons like the one in John 13 – where he washes the cracked, dry, smelling feet of men who hadn’t learned yet to love, to be in a relationship – not just with their Lord, but with each other. THe lesson is harsh, and convicting, how often are we willing to get down on our knees, and deal with the muck those we are called to love have walked through?
It cannot be done, not in our own strength at least. Their burdens are too heavy, their pains too deep, the crap in their lives can, indeed cause us to turn away, spiritually and physically nauseated, disgusted. Or we wonder why, as Michael Card sings, we have to do this day after day, after day…..
So where do we find the strength to obey? Where do we find the power to live lives in this holy manner?
A catholic priest once wrote:
“When you start out each day to work by Christ’s side and to look after all those souls who seek him, remember that there is only one way of doing it: we must turn to the Lord. Only in prayer, and through prayer, do we learn to serve others!” (1)
That’s the answer – through prayer – through intimate conversation, through communion/fellowship – through letting Christ wash our feet,through letting him, remove our burdens, through letting Him still – clean up those parts of our lives that have gotten dry, broken, blistered, smelly….. through letting Him be God. It is the only way, as St. Josemarie told us, to find the strength to serve, to be there for people, to bring healing and love to their lives. We don’t have the strength
We have to let Jesus do that to us….cleanse us, heal us…
and then, the Holy Spirit will work through us to do the same for others.
And oh the joy, oh the inexpressible joy that comes from seeing others cleansed, and counted holy and righteous.
It sends you right back in prayer, to the throne of God, to praise and glorify Him!
Lord, show us Your mercy… even as You work through us to bring that mercy to those we serve around us!
(1)Escriva, Josemaria (2011-01-31). The Forge (Kindle Locations 474-476). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.